LEST WE FORGET

Flying Officer Dean GRAY

Service No: 417746
Born: Adelaide SA, 29 November 1923
Enlisted in the RAAF: 9 July 1942
Unit: No. 619 Squadron (RAF), RAF Strubby, Lincolnshire
Died: Air Operations (No. 619 Squadron Lancaster aircraft ND728), Bay of Biscay, 5 January 1945, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Arthur George Owen and Wynne Ruth Gray, of Nailsworth, South Australia.
Roll of Honour: Adelaide SA
Remembered: Panel 283, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 123, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

Flying Officer Gray may be recorded twice on the SA Memorial – as GRAY D. on Panel 7, First Column and as GRAY D.D. on Panel 8, Third Column. There are no RAAF or other Australian WWII casualties with the name and initials GRAY D. D.

Lancaster ND728 of 619 Squadron took off from RAF Station Strubby at 0122 hours on 5 January 1945 to attack Royan, France. Nothing further was heard of the aircraft or crew after take off. In 1948 it was established that the body of Sergeant Bartholomew had been washed ashore on the French coast and that the remaining six crew members were lost at sea.

The crew members of ND728 were:

Sergeant William Brian Bartholomew (1898551) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Sergeant Ronald Brown (1595165) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Flying Officer Dean Gray (417746) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Howard Insley (1507972) (RAF) (Air Bomber)
Sergeant Arrol Johnson (1595131) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Flight Sergeant Eric Andrew Morley (1581491) (RAF) (Navigator)
Warrant Officer Leslie James Symonds (424572) (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)

References:

Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records (RAAF Casualty Information compiled by Alan Storr (409804))
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/16/514

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